Dark Horse

Music review by
Jacqueline Rupp, Common Sense Media
Dark Horse Music Poster Image
Ratchets up the raunch with tales of sex and drugs.

Parents say

age 14+
Based on 6 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 24 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

"Burn It To The Ground" is about getting drunk and wreaking havoc. Other songs reference prostitution, skirting the law, and having casual sex.


At least half of the songs on this album explore mature sexual themes. Several songs such as "Something in Your Mouth" profile women who use sex to get money. "Next Go Round" is all about marathon sex, and includes references to using a vibrator, sexual positions, and getting covered in Jell-O. Although every line in the song is sexual, here's one of the more explicit, "we're gonna do it hangin upside down… I want you naked with your favorite heels on, slap John Deere across my a-- and ride me up and down the lawn." Another song about golddiggers/prostitutes is "Shakin' Hands." ("She didn't make it this far by just shaking hands...she says they all taste the same in the back of the Benz.")


Expletives are not excessively used, however a--, s--t and t-ts are included in several lines.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

"Burn It To The Ground" details a drunken party at the bar, while "This Afternoon" celebrates smoking pot and lounging around -- "Lookin' like another Bob Marley day, hittin' from the bong like a diesel train." Conversely, "Just to Get High" examines the downward spiral of using hard drugs and the pain of addiction.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this album is more sexually charged than some of Nickelback's previous releases. Also, several of the songs on this album glamorize drinking and smoking marijuana.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bycharles daniels June 1, 2014

Overrated much?

Well, well well. if it isn't another terrible, bland, cliche, sexed up, poorly written set of songs by the most overrated band of all time. This album is j... Continue reading
Parent of a 2, 10, 14, and 17-year-old Written bySystemOfANintendo December 12, 2010

Nickelback *shudders*

This is the second worst heavy metal album ever (second to Results May Vary). It portarys women as worthless crackheads who are for sex, sex, and sex. Oh yeah a... Continue reading
Teen, 16 years old Written byhamstergurl09 January 17, 2011

Bad, Very Bad

Oh. My. Sweet. Jesus. Christ. Superstar.

Absolutely, under no circumstances, listen to this album. It's just sex, sex, and more sex. Typical of Nickelback... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written byHyperBully January 10, 2011

Worst. Band. Ever.

Good god. THREE STARS? The only thing worse than this is Justin Bieber, another Canadian! I feel so sorry for that country.

What's the story?

After three years out of the spotlight, Nickelback has returned with their sixth studio album, DARK HORSE. In classic Nickelback style there are lots of heavy guitar riffs and power ballads, as well as a few of the slow, sentimental numbers that have made them radio favorites. This LP finds the boys less serious than in previous releases, and focusing more on sex, drugs, and rock and roll.

Is it any good?

A lot like the sexy girls the band sings about, Nickelback's latest release is akin to ear candy that lacks the raw emotion of past albums. Full of fluffy verses about having sex and getting drunk, Nickelback's songs are for mature listeners. While there are some sentimental ballads, the tender sentiments about love and seizing the moment seem out of place next to songs celebrating hookers and fellatio.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how a band can create multiple images for themselves. Nickelback may appeal to a female audience because of their tender ballads, but their testosterone-charged tales of sex and drinking might give them credibility with male audiences. Do you think a band can be both?

Music details

  • Artist: Nickelback
  • Release date: November 18, 2008
  • Label: Roadrunner Records
  • Genre: Rock
  • Parental advisory: No
  • Edited version available: No
  • Last updated: April 10, 2020

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